British and American Festivities

by Gina D.B. Clemen

1 / 42

Chapter One: Columbus Day.......................................................................3
Chapter Two: Halloween..............................................................................5 Chapter Three: Guy Fawkes' Night............................................................ 7 Chapter Four: Thanksgiving........................................................................9 Chapter Five: Christmas............................................................................ 11 Chapter Six: New Year's Eve..................................................................... 16 Chapter Seven: New Year's Day................................................................19 Chapter Eight: Chinese New Year.............................................................22 Chapter Nine: Valentine's Day.................................................................. 25 Chapter Ten: St. Patrick's Day.................................................................. 29 Chapter Eleven: Easter...............................................................................31 Chapter Twelve: May Day..........................................................................34 Chapter Thirteen: Independence Day.......................................................36 Chapter Fourteen: Notting Hill Carnival................................................. 38 Track 1: Introduction................................................................................. 40 Track 2: The First Noel and O Come, All Ye Faithful............................ 41

2 / 42

Chapter One: Columbus Day
The second Monday of October is Columbus Day! This festivity is celebrated only in the United States of America. Why? During Christopher Columbus' time people thought the world was flat. Columbus was born in Genoa, a beautiful Italian city on the north-west coast. For many years he watched ships leave the port① of Genoa. He noticed that these ships seemed to go under the horizon②. He was convinced③ that the world was round, but no one believed him. He wanted to reach the East by sailing to the West. Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand of Spain believed Columbus' theory. They gave him three ships, the Santa Maria, the Nina and the Pinta to travel and test this theory. Columbus was an expert navigator④. After a long and difficult voyage, he and his men reached the North American continent on 12 October, 1492! The famous Italian explorer discovered the New World! After his great discovery a new era of exploration began and America was born. Today most Americans celebrate Columbus Day with colourful parades and they elect⑤ a Columbus Day Queen. The parade is usually long with big floats⑥ dedicated to⑦ Columbus and there are other multi-cultural⑧ floats too. After the parade there is usually a dinner and dance. In San Francisco, California, there is also a re-enactment⑨ of Columbus
① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ ⑨

port:港口城镇。 horizon:地平线。 was convinced:确信。 navigator:导航者。 elect:选举。 floats:彩车 dedicated to:纪念。 multi-cultural:多种文化。 re-enactment:再次展现。

3 / 42

discovery. A man dresses up① as and several other men dress up as his sailors. They get into a boat and row to the beach. When they get out of their boat they kneel on the beach and thank God. Americans enjoy remembering the great navigator.

dresses up:化装。

4 / 42

Christian practices replaced pagan practices. They believed that ghosts came out of their tombs on the night of 31 October. Every American calendar has Halloween marked on it. The evening of 31 October was called All Hallows' Eve⑨. the day of All Saints. They dressed as ghosts. Samhain also became a harvest festival after the Roman invasion⑧ of Britain in 43 AD. practised② religious rituals③ and magic on Samhain.Chapter Two: Halloween Halloween① is celebrated on 31 October. They wanted to frighten the evil spirits. The Celtic priests. called Druids. 31 October. ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ ⑨ ⑩ Halloween:万圣节前夕。 practised:举行。 rituals:仪式。 predicted:预言。 scary:吓人的。 costumes:服装。 skeletons:骷髅。 invasion:侵略。 Eve:前夜。 typical:典型的。 5 / 42 . This became Halloween. The Christians called 1 November All Hallows' Day. On this day the Celts made big fires and dressed in scary⑤ costumes⑥. It is an exciting event in the United States and in Great Britain. Halloween has ancient Celtic origins. On the Celtic calendar Samhain was the last day of summer and the last day of the year. They also predicted④ the future. At Halloween American children in elementary schools take their costumes and masks to school. Typical⑩ Halloween costumes are the witch. skeletons⑦ and witches.

ghost. They write on windows with soap or spray shaving cream on cars and people! ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ vampire:吸血鬼。 alien:外星人。 are decorated with:装饰。 pumpkins:南瓜。 tradition:传统。 jack o'lanterns:杰克灯。 6 / 42 . If not. skeleton. It is a popular tradition⑤ to make jack o'lanterns⑥ out of pumpkins. In the afternoon the children put on their costumes and have a Halloween party at school. Schools are decorated with③ pumpkins④. ghosts. The best costume usually wins a prize. nuts. "Trick or treat?" People usually give them sweets or money. the children playa trick. They go from house to house in their costumes and ring doorbells. liquorice. The jack o' lantern is of Celtic origin too. but some prefer to buy them. American teenagers have a Halloween party in the evening. The party is usually in the school gymnasium and everyone wears a costume and mask . American and British children and teenagers go "trick-or-treating" on Halloween evening. witches and bats. There are funny Halloween games such as bobbing for apples. They introduced the custom of "trick-or-treating". When the door opens they shout. People put them in front of the windows of their homes. popcorn and pumpkin pie. Favourite Halloween foods are candied apples. Young people have fun making their own costumes. vampire① or alien②. In the 19th century Irish immigrants took their Halloween customs to the United States. monster.

The other plotters were found three days later. when the King was present. King James I was a Protestant and he passed severe laws against Catholics. The King's soldiers discovered the plot! Guy Fawkes was immediately arrested and tortured⑨. The story of Guy Fawkes goes back to the early 1600's. The leader of the plot was Robert Catesby. This was called the Gunpowder Plot.Chapter Three: Guy Fawkes' Night The fifth of November is Guy Fawkes' Night or Bonfire① Night. His responsibility was to guard the barrels of explosives and light the fuse⑧ on November. Guy Fawkes was an expert with explosives. A group of 12 Catholics decided to kill King James I and destroy the Parliament Building! They planned to blow up④ the Houses of Parliament on 5 November 1605. During this period there were religious problems between Protestants② Catholics③ in Britain. On the night of 5 November 1605 many people in London were happy because the plot was discovered. This is a British festivity. To celebrate they started bonfires in the ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ ⑨ ⑩ bonfire:篝火。 protestants:新教徒。 Catholics:天主教徒。 blow up:炸毁。 plotters:密谋者。 explosives:炸药。 cellars:地窖。 light the fuse:点鞭炮。 tortured:折磨。 hanged:吊死。 7 / 42 . Guy Fawkes and the others were hanged⑩. The plotters⑤ put 30 barrels of explosives⑥ in the cellars⑦ under the Parliament Building. They were not permitted to have religious services.

On the night of 5 November there are fireworks and big bonfires to burn the Guy. remember The fifth of November Gunpowder. Today young people in Britain make a Guy with old clothes and fill him with newspaper. I see no reason Why gunpowder and treason Should ever be forgot ① ② effigy:肖像。 fireworks:烟火。 8 / 42 . On this night they eat toffee apples. Some people have bonfires in their back gardens. In Lewes. excitement and colourful fireworks. There are also brilliant fireworks.street. Then they go around the streets with the Guy and ask for "a penny for the Guy?" With this money they buy fireworks②. there is a big public festival on Guy Fawkes' Night. Ever since that day the British have celebrated Guy Fawkes' Night. treason and plot. The Guy is burned on top of a hill on an enormous bonfire. People dress in historic costumes. Sussex. Someone made an effigy① of Guy Fawkes and burned it. Young people love the noise. Here is a rhyme about Guy Fawkes: Remember.

The winter was very cold and harsh. They arrived on the north-east coast of North America in December 1620 and founded⑥ Plymouth. But it was too late to cultivate⑦ crops⑧. However. One hundred men. Why is Thanksgiving such an important day? The tradition started with the Pilgrims②. Their sea voyage was very difficult. The area was a wilderness. women and children left Britain on a small ship called the Mayflower.⑨ Almost half of the Pilgrims died ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ ⑨ occasion:时刻。 pilgrims:清教徒。 founders: 建立者。 persecution:迫害。 freedom:自由。 founded:创建。 cultivate:种植。 crops:庄稼。 harsh:严酷的。 9 / 42 . They immediately built small homes. Friday. Saturday and Sunday. Americans travel great distances to be with their families on this occasion①. The Pilgrims left Great Britain in 1620 because of religious persecution④. schools and many shops and offices are closed for four days: Thursday. They wanted to start a new life in America and practise their religion in freedom⑤.Chapter Four: Thanksgiving Thanksgiving is a very important American festivity and it is celebrated on the last Thursday of November. the founders③ of America. Many Pilgrims died during the voyage. It was almost winter and they had no homes and little food. Thanksgiving is a special day for families to be together and to thank God for all they have.

Saturday and Sunday for the Christmas shoppers. The summer harvest was excellent. 10 / 42 . People eat roast turkey. decided to celebrate with a dinner for the Pilgrims and the Indians. the Pilgrim leader. He explained how to grow corn. cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie. Christmas shopping! Big stores and shops are open on Friday. The Pilgrims worked hard and cultivated crops. By November 1621 everyone had food and a home. He wanted to give thanks to God. sweet potatoes. The long Thanksgiving weekend is the perfect time to start. Soon the Pilgrims and the Indians became good friends. hunt and live in the wilderness. corn. In the spring the Pilgrims met an Indian called Squanto. There was hope for the future. The friendly Wampanoag Indians helped them during the long winter. Most families start the meal with a prayer. This was the first Thanksgiving dinner and it lasted for three days.because their living conditions were very bad. Today the traditional Thanksgiving meal is similar to the first. Governor William Bradford.

Fir trees and holly are still a symbol⑥ of Christmas. holly. Christ's mass. a story about the true meaning of Christmas. Yule had its own traditions of Yule cakes. ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ carol:圣诞颂歌。 winter solstice:冬至。 merrymaking:寻欢作乐。 exchanged:交换。 fir trees:松树。 symbol:象征。 rite:仪式。 11 / 42 . Why is Christmas celebrated on 25 December? Christmas comes from two pagan festivals. People celebrated the winter solstice② on 21 or 22 December. Saturnalia was a time of merrymaking③. the famous British writer. After the winter solstice. The word Christmas comes from the Old English "Cristes maesse".Chapter Five: Christmas On 25 December Great Britain and the United States (and many other countries) celebrate Christmas. the days become longer and the sun is higher in the sky. The Roman emperors chose 25 December as the birthday of the sun (natalis solis). On this day Christians celebrate the birth of Christ. wrote A Christmas Carol①. fir trees⑤. Charles Dickens. The pagan tribes of northern Europe enjoyed a 12-day winter festival called Yule. Today a branch of mistletoe in the house has another meaning: when a boy and girl meet Under the mistletoe they usually kiss! The custom of kissing under the mistletoe is an ancient Celtic rite⑦. In ancient Rome this was the season of Saturnalia. During Saturnalia the Romans exchanged④ presents. mistletoe and presents. Kindness and giving are the spirit of Christmas.

Celebrations started on 25 December and ended on the night of 6 January. They usually receive money for their singing. colorful lights and much more. On street corners people sing Christmas carols. The Germans put up a fir tree in their homes and decorated it with biscuits④ and candles⑤. The modern Christmas tree originated in③ western Germany long ago. Shop windows are full of presents for everyone. They go from house to house and sing. In Britain many children go carol singing with an adult. In Great Britain and the United States people prepare for Christmas weeks before 25 December. Cities and towns are beautifully decorated with Christmas symbols: the Christmas tree. German settlers took this tradition to North America in the 17th century. People are busy buying presents. The German Prince Albert. in Scotland. There is a joyous atmosphere②. There are Santa Clauses everywhere. Santa Claus. However.Medieval① Christmas was a long event. Queen Victoria's husband. took the Christmas tree to the ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ medieval:中世纪。 joyous atmosphere:喜庆的气氛。 originated in:起源于。 biscuits:饼干。 candles:蜡烛。 12 / 42 . In Britain the Christmas tree became popular after 1840. By the 19th century Christmas trees were very popular in the United States. Christmas today respects many of the old traditions and has added new ones. It lasted twelve days like the Yule festival. They use this money to buy presents. Christmas is the biggest holiday on the American and British calendar. New Year is more important.

There is a big tree every year in Trafalgar Square. At Christmas the top of the building is illuminated with red and green lights! Today almost every Christian family has a decorated Christmas tree at home or in the garden. The first ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ Nativity:耶稣的出生。 scene: 景象。 crackers:爆竹。 bangs:发出巨响。 ornaments:装饰物。 decorations:装饰物。 relatives:亲戚。 13 / 42 . a paper hat and a joke. Today America's most famous Christmas tree is in the Rockefeller Center. St. Christmas crackers③ are an old tradition. Inside there is usually a small present. London. Francis of Assisi created the first Nativity scene in the 1200's! Many Americans wear Christmas clothes during the Christmas season. These are clothes with Christmas colours and symbols. In the United States there are "Christmas shops" in many cities. Some families put up the tree on Christmas Eve and others put it up at the beginning of December. The Empire State Building in New York City is one of the tallest buildings in the world. so you can buy your Christmas tree in June! It is usual to send Christmas cards to relatives⑦ and friends.British Royal Family. They were invented in London. Many families put a Nativity① scene② under the Christmas tree. Soon the Christmas tree became popular all over Great Britain. They sell all types of Christmas trees. New York City. Two people pull the cracker until it "bangs④" and opens. ornaments⑤ and other decorations⑥ for the home. "Christmas shops" are open all year long.

New York. dressed in a red suit. The Dutch settlers of New York brought the tradition of Sinterklaas (Santa Claus) to America. is an important part of the Christmas tradition. Father Christmas. Nicholas. Today we see Santa Claus as an old man with a white beard. Many Christians go to church services at midnight and others go on Christmas morning. The figure② of Santa Claus comes from St. Children write letters to him and ask for special presents. He drives a sleigh③ pulled by reindeer and comes down the chimney with toys for the children. "Christmas greetings from Pease's Great Variety Store. American and British children put out a stocking⑤ on Christmas Eve because they hope to receive presents from Santa Claus. He was famous for his generosity and kindness. Then they go to bed early because they want Santa Claus to come." This was the beginning of the big Christmas card industry①.Christmas card was designed in Britain by John Callcott Horsley in 1843. made a card that said. Christmas presents are usually opened on Christmas morning. This image of Santa Claus was created by the American cartoonist④ Thomas Nast in 1863. or Santa Claus. A thousand copies of the card were printed in London. a 4th century Christian bishop of Asia Minor." In the mid-19th century a shop owner in Albany. The design was a family party with the words "A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you. After Christmas dinner many families listen to the traditional Queen's Speech in ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ industry:行业。 figure:形象。 sleigh:雪橇。 cartoonist:漫画家。 stocking:长筒袜。 14 / 42 .

Children play with their new toys. In Britain some people go for a Christmas Day swim in the sea or in a lake. In Hyde Park in London some courageous people swim in the Serpentine! 15 / 42 .Britain and watch special Christmas television programmes.

noise. For auld lang syne. festive food and drink are all part of New Year's Eve. At parties everyone wears funny paper hats and blows toy horns⑤. music. Everyone takes off their mask at midnight.Chapter Six: New Year's Eve On 31 December everyone celebrates the end of the old year and the beginning of the new. In America and Britain many people like going to parties or organising them in their homes. And never brought to mind? Should auld acquaintance be forgot. Some people prefer to celebrate in restaurants or night clubs. colourful decorations. At midnight everyone joins hands and sings the old Scottish song "Auld Lang Syne. People wear their best party clothes on this exciting night. ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ immense:巨大的。 balls:舞会。 cheers:喝彩。 confetti:五彩纸屑。 toy horns:喇叭。 16 / 42 . In Edinburgh there is an immense① street celebration on New Year's Eve. dancing." Should auld acquaintance be forgot. It is the most important celebration of the year. People like throwing confetti④ on the last night of the year. For the sake of auld lang syne. Young people celebrate at home or at a disco. my dear. In Scotland New Year's Eve is called Hogmanay. Parties usually begin after 9 pm and continue until the next morning. Cheers③. Others go to masked balls② in costumes and masks.

And we'll take a cup of kindness yet. people cheer and there is a lot of noise. Children write down their New Year’s resolutions. People sing "Auld Lang Syne". but a few do! In some American cities office workers throw their old calendars out of ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ electronic sign:电子标牌。 sirens:汽笛。 civilizations:文明。 evil spirits:邪恶的灵魂。 get rid of:除掉。 resolutions:决心。 go on a diet:节食。 keep their promises:遵守承诺。 17 / 42 . Some typical adult's resolutions are: "I resolve to stop smoking" or "I resolve to go on a diet⑦". Ancient civilizations③ made noise to frighten evil spirits④ of the past year. kiss each other and cheer. In London many people go to celebrate in Trafalgar Square. On New Year's Eve the Americans and the British make New Year's resolutions or promises. Bells and sirens② ring. Everyone in Britain waits for Big Ben to strike midnight. sign their name and give the paper to their parents. For the sake of auld lang syne. In New York City a favourite place to go on New Year's Eve is Times Square. Most people don't keep their promises⑧. They promise to get rid of⑤ bad habits during the new year. When we make a lot of noise on New Year's Eve we are following ancient traditions. Some typical children's resolutions⑥ are: "I resolve to do my homework" or "I resolve to clean my room every day". Then there is a lot of noise.For auld lang syne. At midnight the words "Happy New Year" appear on an electronic sign①.

the office windows on 31 December. ① ② ③ ④ incredible:不可思议。 astrologists:占星学家。 zodiac:黄道带。 catastrophic:灾难的。 18 / 42 . It is incredible① to see so much paper flying about. Some astrologists predict catastrophic④ events. They are throwing the old year away. At the end of the year astrologists② predict the future for all the signs of the zodiac③. By 5:30 pm the streets are covered with office calendars.

This was part of a Roman and old English tradition. Friends and relatives come to say "Happy New Year!" They eat and drink something and then leave. In 45 BC the Roman Emperor Julius Caesar created a calendar with 1 January as the first day of the new year. During "Open House" the front door of your home is open all day long. This calendar is still used today. In Britain most families have a big lunch and spend a quiet day at home. Shops and offices give calendars and small presents to their clients. ① ② familiar:熟悉的。 overflowed:泛滥的。 19 / 42 . the first president of the United States." This familiar① greeting is heard throughout Britain and the United States on 1 January. January comes from "Janus. For the early Britons and the Romans the New Year began on the first day of spring. In the United States many families have "Open House" on New Year's Day. New Year's traditions come from different cultures. Many people give presents and send cards on New Year's Day.Chapter Seven: New Year's Day "Happy New Year!" "The same to you and many more. On New Year's Day most of the United States is covered with snow. The Egyptian New Year began when the Nile River overflowed②. Many clubs and organisations have "Open House" too. People have always celebrated the New Year. It is a custom introduced by George Washington. In ancient civilizations the calendar was based on the seasons." the Roman god of beginnings and endings.

However. Every year there are about 60 spectacular② floats made of fresh flowers. Texas New Orleans. in California and in the southern states it is warm and sunny. The floats show favourite storybook characters③ and animals. Louisiana The Pasadena "Tournament① of Roses" parade is the biggest and oldest New Year's Day event. Florida Dallas. because so many citrus fruits grow in southern California. In Pasadena more than three million people go to watch the parade. Each region has its parade and football game. It takes about a year to organise the Pasadena "Tournament of Roses'" parade! The entire city participates in this extraordinary⑤ event. California Miami. These football games are called Bowl Games. When the parade ends everyone goes to the football stadium⑥ to watch the Rose Bowl game. More than 70 million Americans watch it on television. Another famous New Year's Day parade is the Macy's Day Parade in New ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ Tournament:巡演。 spectacular:壮观。 characters:人物。 Citrus:柑桔。 extraordinary:不寻常的。 stadium:体育场。 20 / 42 . In these sunny places there are parades and football games. FOOTBALL GAME PLACE Rose Bowl Orange Bowl Cotton Bowl Sugar Bowl Pasadena. the biggest sports event of the year. The queen of the parade is called the Citrus④ Queen.

Many Americans watch this parade on television in the morning and in the afternoon they watch a football game. 21 / 42 .York City.

rabbit. horse. tiger. snake. rooster⑤. dog and pig. The first year was named after the rat. The exact date on the Western calendar changes from year to year. The Chinese get rid of old and useless things. monkey. They do this to throw away the misfortunes⑧ of the past year. A Chinese legend says that these twelve animals had a race. the winner. delicious meal. However. On Chinese New Year's Eve all family members enjoy a big. in which the animals arrived in the race. It is very important for the Chinese to be with their families on this ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ the spring festival:春节。 the Lunar New Year:农历新年。 dragon:龙。 ram:羊。 rooster:鸡。 order:顺序。 characteristics:特点。 misfortune:不幸。 22 / 42 .Chapter Eight: Chinese New Year Chinese New Year is the most important festivity for the Chinese people in America and Great Britain. These animals are the rat. The other eleven years were named after the order⑥. dragon③. Chinese New Year takes place between 1 January and 19 February. Celebrations in Chinese families last for about two weeks. The clever rat jumped onto the ox's back then at the end jumped over the ox's head to arrive first! The Chinese believe that a person born in a particular year has some of the characteristics⑦ of that animal. Every year has an animal's name. On the Chinese lunar calendar every month begins with the new moon. The celebration begin with traditional house cleaning. ram④. It is also called the Spring Festival① or the Lunar New Year②. ox.

New York. has the biggest Oriental⑤ community outside of Asia. weddings and birthdays. This is one of the biggest parades in an English-speaking country. A lot of Chinese immigrants worked in California during the Gold Rush④. It is possible to stop and eat typical Chinese food. This area of San Francisco is called Chinatown. restaurants and libraries in Chinatown. San Francisco. On New Year's Day all Chinese children wear new clothes with bright colours. In Britain a parade takes place in Soho. Honolulu and Houston. California. Chinatown is decorated with beautiful ornaments. Soho there are many Chinese restaurants. Fish is always part of the dinner because it represents① abundance②. Red is considered a lucky colour. Most of the costumes and masks come from Hong Kong. celebrations. London. Chinese New Year is a major event with wonderful parades. There are many Chinese shops. Red is a traditional colour for festivals. Chinese New Year was celebrated on 21 February. In Chinatown. 1851 for the first time in San Francisco! This was during the California Gold Rush. In big American cities such as San Francisco. All street and shop signs are written in Chinese! During the Chinese New Year. Parents and relatives give children the traditional New Year's gift called "Lai see" (lucky money).occasion. Dragon or lion dancers③ often lead the parade. This money is put into bright red and gold envelopes. Every year there ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ represents:代表。 abundance:富裕。 lion dancers:舞狮人。 Gold Rush:淘金热。 Oriental:东方的。 23 / 42 .

The dragon is considered a lucky figure. cymbals and noisy firecrackers. It is a magnificent④ event. Every year the San Francisco parade attracts thousands of spectators③. The lion dancers are always part of the festivities. During the parade children represent the animals of the Chinese calendar. The dragon is the most important figure of the Chinese New Year festivities and parades. ① ② ③ ④ contest:竞赛。 acrobats: 杂技。 spectators:观看者。 magnificent:壮丽的。 24 / 42 . The lion has a big head and long body made of cloth. According to ancient traditions the great noise frightens away evil spirits. A parade dragon can be 20 to 30 metres long! Sixty or more men move under a long cloth that represents the dragon's a Miss Chinatown USA beauty and talent contest①. The lion dance is accompanied by drums. There are also acrobats② and musicians in beautiful costumes.

flowers or jewellery.The lady was the young man's sweetheart for one year. Others say Valentine was put in prison by Emperor Claudius because he secretly married young couples. Presents can be a box of chocolates. He died on 14 February in the year 270. romantic or poetic③. When and where did this festivity start? The custom of celebrating Valentine's Day probably began with the Roman festival of Lupercalia on 15 February. The Emperor did not like these secret marriages. but the festival continued. A legend says that birds begin to mate⑦ on 14 February! ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ Valentine's Day:情人节。 sweethearts:恋人。 poetic:充满诗意的。 urn:翁。 martyr:殉道者。 gallant:华丽的。 mate:交配。 25 / 42 . 14 February. Every young man took the name of a young lady from an urn④ . Valentine's Day. During Lupercalia there were games and dancing. With the beginning of Christianity pagan customs were not permitted.Chapter Nine: Valentine's Day Valentine's Day①. Cards can be funny. The origin of the name is still a mystery. In the 7th century this festival was called St. Some say that Valentine comes from the French word "galantin" (a gallant⑥ or beau). is dedicated to people in love! On 14 February sweethearts② celebrate Valentine's Day with cards and presents. Some historians say that the festival took its name from a Christian martyr⑤ named Valentine.

poetic. In England the pagan and Christian customs combined② to form the Valentine festivity. They painted butterflies. American manufacturers⑦ Sprinted millions of romantic cards.The Roman conquerors① brought the celebration to England. And I a maid④ at your window To be your Valentine. In the play Hamlet Ophelia sang this song: "Tomorrow is St. Shakespeare's characters Romeo and Juliet are the eternal③ symbol of love. ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ ⑨ ⑩ conquerors:征服者。 combined:结合。 eternal:永恒的。 maid:女孩。 settlers:定居者。 verses:诗句。 manufacturers:制造者。 moving:会动的。 comic:滑稽的。 grotesque:怪异的。 26 / 42 . sweethearts exchanged presents on 14 February. In the 1800's few people had time to make Valentine's cards. The English settlers⑤ took this romantic tradition to the New World." In 17th century London. Today there are all types of Valentine's cards: romantic. It had funny cartoons or grotesque⑩ pictures with comic messages. comic. and little birds that seemed to fly. Valentine's Day All in the morning be time. The Valentine tradition was popular in Shakespeare's time. the comic⑨ Valentine became popular. Some settlers made beautiful Valentine's cards by hand. The most popular cards had moving⑧ parts: windows that opened and showed a romantic poem. flowers. cupids and hearts on the cards. and then wrote original verses⑥. After the romantic Valentine.

Then the Valentine's cards are sent to the addressee⑦." If you want to use this unusual Valentine's service. From the Sweetheart City Come Valentine wishes. A picture of Cupid and romantic verses are stamped⑤ on the envelope⑥. write to the following address for more information: Ms Julie Farnham . The Loveland Post Office receives more than 300000 Valentine's cards from all over the world. The Loveland Post Office cancels④ these cards with the Loveland." "Hope this special day Will make you smile and the love sent from love land Will shorten each mile. artistic① and handmade②! In 1947 the town of Loveland in Colorado. Colorado cancellation.grotesque. became Cupid's residence③! In Loveland something very unusual happens about two weeks before Valentine's Day.Valentine's Cards ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ artistic:精美的。 handmade:手工制作的。 residence:住处。 cancels:盖邮戳。 stamped:盖章。 envelope:信封。 addressee:收卡人。 27 / 42 .Visitors Center . These are two examples of the Loveland verses: "Across the land we send hugs and kisses. USA.

relative or a friend. In elementary school American boys and girls write cards to their favourite classmates. Most children sign their Valentine's card. Colorado 80538 . In the afternoon there is a Valentine's Day party. the top of the Empire State Building in New York City is illuminated with red lights to celebrate Valentine's Day.5400 Stone Creek Circle . but some remain anonymous or write "From a Secret Admirer. The teacher takes the cards out of the box and gives them to the children.USA Telephone: 001-880-258-1278 In Great Britain it is customary① to send an anonymous② Valentine's card or present to the person you like or love. Then they put them into a big box in the school hall. The person must guess who wrote it.Suite 100 . On this day you can send a card or a present to a parent. Valentine's Day is an occasion to express love or affection③ to anyone. Today in the United States Valentine's Day has a bigger meaning. For the "Sweethearts' Ball" the hall is decorated with red hearts and cupids! Some people have parties at home to celebrate this day dedicated to love. ① ② ③ customary:习惯上的。 anonymous:匿名。 affection:喜爱。 28 / 42 . This is always an exciting moment! Children like counting their cards. there is a "Sweethearts' Ball" on the evening of 14 February. In the USA.Loveland." In American high schools and universities. grandparent.

Patrick was born in Britain in 389 AD. There are legends about St. He left several writings about his life and work in Ireland.Chapter Ten: St. His missionary⑤ work was very successful. Patrick's Day In the United States and Great Britain. His father was a landowner② and a Christian. He was a generous and dedicated⑦ man. There he became a priest③. Patrick. the Irish communities celebrate St. He introduced the Roman alphabet⑧ to Ireland. When Patrick was 16 years old he was captured and taken to Ireland. One legend says that he banished⑨ all the serpents⑩ from Ireland. Another legend says that he used a shamrock11 to teach the Irish about the Trinity. After six years Patrick escaped to France by ship. Who was St. The Irish community in the United States is very big. He returned to Ireland as a bishop④ in 432 AD. He converted⑥ most of the Irish to Christianity. He became a slave. Patrick and why is he important to the Irish? St. Patrick is the patron① of Ireland. Patrick's Day on 17 March. They settled in all parts of the country and took their traditions with them. Today the shamrock is still a symbol of ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ ⑨ ⑩ 11 patron:保护神。 landowner:地主。 priest:神职人员。 bishop:主教。 missionary:传教的。 converted:转变。 dedicated:有献身精神的。 the Roman alphabet:罗马字母的。 banished: 驱逐。 serpents:毒蛇。 shamrock:三叶草。 29 / 42 . During the 1800's thousands of Irish immigrants went to America.

Most people wear a green shamrock. ① ② ③ pilgrimage:朝圣。 in honour of:纪念。 lively:欢快的。 30 / 42 .Ireland and the Irish. American and British people wear green clothing on St. Many shops and restaurants are decorated with green shamrocks in honour of the Irish. Marching bands dressed in green play lively③ Irish music. Patrick's Day. Today on 17 March there are big parades in most American cities in honour of② the Irish. Patrick died in 461 and his tomb at Downpatrick is a centre of pilgrimage①. The Irish community organises parades and other colourful events. St.

This is between 22 March and 25 April. The origin of the English word Easter is uncertain③. Others take place⑦ out of doors in a garden or park. The Christian Easter slowly replaced⑤ the pagan festivals. For most Christian families Easter morning begins with a church service. such as flowers. Easter is a time for Christians to be happy and there is special music in the churches. It is possible to hear George Frederick Handel's "Messiah" during some Easter services. It probably comes from the pagan goddess④ of spring. but some symbols of the spring festivals remained.Chapter Eleven: Easter Easter① is a very important Christian festivity. Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the full moon in March. rabbits and bunnies⑥. In Britain and in the United States it is usual to send Easter cards to friends and relatives. The pagans offered their eggs in grass baskets to the goddess Eostre. eggs. Eostre. Some Easter services begin very early in the morning. The pagans celebrated the arrival of spring with special festivals. Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah To celebrate Easter and the arrival of spring almost everyone wears ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ Easter:复活节。 resurrection:复活。 uncertain:不确定的。 goddess:女神。 replaced:取代。 bunnies:兔子。 take place:举行。 31 / 42 . People celebrate the resurrection② of Jesus Christ on the third day after his death. The tradition of the Easter basket is ancient.

something new: a new dress. Members of noble families gave one another gold-covered eggs as Easter presents! On Easter Day in the United States. The children must find the hidden eggs. The child with the biggest number of eggs is the winner. chocolate bunnies and sugar eggs in all sweet shops. At Easter time there are chocolate eggs. in a shrub or under a tree. Before Easter Day American and British children paint Easter eggs with bright colours and designs. Eggs are hidden in the grass. Parents tell their children that the Easter bunny hid many eggs in the park. The first egg that reaches the bottom of the hill without breaking is the winner. They are small sweet cakes ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ fertility:生育力。 roll:滚动。 lawn:草坪。 are personalized with:标明。 cross:十字架。 32 / 42 . When the children find the eggs they put them in colourful Easter baskets. On Easter Monday children roll② their eggs down a hill. Some eggs are personalized with④ a name on them. new shoes. The President of the United States invites children to roll eggs on the lawn③ of the White House. The tradition of the Easter bunny and the basket of eggs was introduced by German immigrants long ago. Hot Cross⑤ Buns are a special Easter food. The decoration of Easter eggs began in England during the Middle Ages. There is the traditional Easter egg hunt in every city and town. Egg rolling is an ancient Easter tradition. a new suit. A famous egg-rolling contest takes place outside the White House in Washington DC on Easter Monday. The egg is an ancient symbol of life and fertility①. Coloured eggs were exchanged at ancient spring festivals.

" Families usually spend Easter Day together. There is a prize for the most original. Here is a verse: "In your Easter bonnet With all the frills upon it You'll be the grandest lady In the Easter parade. new potatoes and eggs in many forms. The most famous Easter Bonnet Parade is in New York City.with a cross on top. on Fifth Avenue. Thousands of people participate③! In 1933 the great American composer Irving Berlin wrote a song about the Easter Bonnet Parade. Most women make their own bonnets. ① ② ③ Bonnet:女帽。 bizarre:怪诞的。 participate:参加。 33 / 42 . Girls and women with funny and bizarre② Easter bonnets march in the parade. peas. The traditional Easter meal consists of roast lamb. The buns are usually eaten in Britain on Good Friday. In many American cities and towns there is an Easter Bonnet① Parade. This cross represents Christ's death on the cross.

The ancient Celts celebrated spring the night before May Day. In the Middle Ages May Day was one of the merriest④ festivities in Britain. When the Romans invaded③ Britain the festivity was celebrated by the Britons too.Chapter Twelve: May Day On the first day of May we celebrate the arrival of spring and warm weather. This festival was called Beltane. sang songs and danced happily. There was music. Flowers bloom①. People went into the forest after midnight to pick flowers and plants. They returned the next morning and put the leaves and flowers in their hair. The most important event of the day was the dance around the Maypole. The May Day② festival originated in the Roman Empire in about 258 BC. There were Morris dances too. It is not a public holiday in the United States. It was a festivity in honour of Flora. the goddess of flowers and spring. singing and dancing all day. In central Scotland Beltane is still an important festival. People in costumes dance around the Maypole. leaves grow and baby animals are born in spring. The most beautiful young woman of the village became the Queen of the May. The Druids made big fires on top of the hills. Everyone is happy to say goodbye to winter and to welcome spring. The Maypole ① ② ③ ④ bloom:开花。 May Day:五朔节。 invaded:侵略。 merriest:最欢乐的。 34 / 42 . In Britain May Day is a public holiday and it is celebrated on the first Monday in May. In Britain and the United States there are still traditional Maypole dances on May Day. The Celts sat around the fires and ate.

There are beautiful floral② decorations everywhere. A young woman becomes the May Queen. They dance with bells and decorated with many coloured ribbons. The coloured ribbons represent the sun's rays① and form a design on the Maypole. In Britain many people in costumes do Morris dancing on May Day. The tradition probably came from Spain in the 13th century when it was called Moorish dancing. Music. ① ② rays:光线。 floral:花的。 35 / 42 . In the United States most elementary schools celebrate May Day with dances around the Maypole. In some American towns and universities there are May Day festivals. dancing around the Maypole and games are all part of the festival.

Today Americans celebrate the Fourth of July in many different ways. With the Declaration of Independence the thirteen colonies created their own nation. Virginia. They wanted to be independent and to choose their own government. 1776 a group of patriots⑥ wrote the Declaration of Independence⑦. equality and opportunity for all. It is a time to remember America's ideals of liberty③. It is the nation's birthday. Britain imposed④ high taxes and there were many rebellion⑤s. The Americans fought against the British in the American Revolution. What happened on 4 July? In the 1700's the thirteen American colonies belonged to Great Britain. The Fourth of July is a salute② to freedom and democracy. The Declaration proclaimed⑧ independence from Britain and democracy and justice for all. The Liberty Bell is a symbol of Independence Day. On 4 July. There is an American flag on every flagpole and many people put a flag ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ ⑨ animated:活跃的。 salute:敬礼。 liberty:自由。 imposed:征收。 rebellions:反抗。 patriots:爱国者。 Declaration of independence:独立宣言。 proclaimed:宣告。 were defeated:被打败。 36 / 42 . The colonists did not want to be governed by Britain. They wanted a democracy. After years of war the British were defeated⑨ in 1781 in Yorktown.Chapter Thirteen: Independence Day The most animated① American festivity is the Fourth of July or Independence Day. the United States of America.

" Every city and town organises its own celebration. a lot of music. In New York City the top of the Empire State Building is illuminated with red. The festivities usually end with a brilliant fireworks show. Americans call their flag "the Stars and Stripes. Children ride decorated bicycles in the parade. After a delicious picnic of barbecued meat. Bridgeport. Bridgeport celebrates Independence Day in an old-fashioned way.outside their window. Arizona. Red. American Indians celebrate with a three-day powwow. hot dogs. parades. A western rodeo is a spectacular event to watch! In Virginia there are historic parades with people in 18th-century costumes. dancing and picnics. there is a baseball game. These picnics are an old American tradition. There is a big pie-eating competition. a rodeo and tribal dances. Then cowboys and Indians from nearby ranches come to the town on their beautiful horses. white and blue lights! In Flagstaff. California is a small town in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. chocolate cake and ice cream. The typical picnic consists of hamburgers. baseball games. potato salad. Traditional Fourth of July events are patriotic speeches. Before the 10 o'clock parade someone reads the Declaration of Independence to the town. In the evening there is country music and dancing. white and blue decorations fill the streets. 37 / 42 . In the West rodeos are a favourite event. competitions.

The Carnival takes place in Notting Hill. On the days of Carnival. it was a great success. in the month of March. They took their customs and traditions with them. However. Carnival celebrations normally⑤ take place before Easter. People remembered the great Carnivals held in the West Indies and in 1964 a street festival took place in Notting Hill. and in particular② from Trinidad. During the year the West Indian families prepare their beautiful costumes and practise playing their steel drums. However. emigrated③ to Britain. On Sunday there is the Children's Carnival. Notting Hill is full of colour. West London. music. There were few people in costume dancing in the streets and carrying steel④ drums in this first festival.Chapter Fourteen: Notting Hill Carnival The Notting Hill Carnival① of London is the second biggest carnival in the world and the biggest street festival in Europe! It is always on the last Sunday and Monday in August which is a Bank Holiday (a public holiday) in the United Kingdom. in Britain the celebrations take place in August when the weather is warmer. About two million people go to Carnival every year! Nottiong Hill Carnival:诺丁山狂欢节。 in particular:特别。 emigrated:移居外国。 steel:钢。 normally:通常的。 ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ 38 / 42 . They also work on their floats. noise and people. excitement. Since then Carnival has taken place every year in Notting Hill and it has grown into an enormous multicultural arts festival. When did the first Carnival take place? In the 1950's people from the Caribbean.

specialities:特产。 39 / 42 . the traditional music of the West Indies. Everyone has a good time! ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑦ ⑧ soul:灵歌。 Calypso:即兴讽刺歌。 reggae:雷盖乐。 hip-hop:说唱音乐。 jazz:爵士乐。 vendors:小贩。 patties:馅饼。 13.People with wonderful costumes dance in the streets and steel bands play Calypso. There is a prize for the best float.the only way to move is to dance! In the streets food vendors⑥ sell meat and vegetable patties⑦. It is sometimes almost impossible for the public to walk along the streets . salted fish and other delicious West Indian specialities⑧. They also play Soca. a mixture of Soul① and Calypso②. It is also possible to hear reggae③. hip-hop④ and jazz⑤. A parade with colourful floats travels seven and a half kilometres through the streets of London. the traditional music of Carnival.

You will notice that some festivities are celebrated only in Great Britain and others only in America. their origins and how they are celebrated.Track 1: Introduction How much do you know about British and American festivities? Do you know that ancient pagan customs are still part of some festivities? This books tells you about the most important festivities of the year. 40 / 42 . You will also notice that Americans love big celebrations with parades and marching bands.

Track 2: The First Noel and O Come. Noel. Noel. All Ye Faithful The First Noel The First Noel. Noel. the Angels did say Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay In fields where they lay keeping their sheep On a cold winter's night that was so deep. Noel. Noel Born is the King of Israel! They looked up and saw a star Shining in the East beyond them far And to the earth it gave great light And so it continued both day and night. Noel Born is the King of Israel! O Come. Noel. Noel. Noel. Noel. Noel. Noel Born is the King of Israel! And by the light of that same star Three Wise men came from country far To seek for a King was their intent And to follow the star wherever it went. All Ye Faithful O Come All Ye Faithful 41 / 42 .

Joyful and triumphant. let us adore Him. let us adore Him. O come. Give to our Father glory in the Highest. 42 / 42 . Christ the Lord. Christ the Lord. O come. O come ye. Word of the Father. choirs of angels. O come. let us adore Him. All Hail! Lord. O come. O come. O come ye to Bethlehem. let us adore Him. Christ the Lord. we greet Thee. let us adore Him. Born the King of Angels. O Sing. Born this happy morning. O come. O come. let us adore Him. now in flesh appearing. Sing in exultation. Come and behold Him. O Jesus! for evermore be Thy name adored. Sing all that hear in heaven God's holy word. let us adore Him. let us adore Him. let us adore Him. O come. O come.